To assist young professionals in reaching higher potential through community development, networking events, training opportunities, and recognizing achievements for the purpose of attraction and retention in the community.


To be recognized as the principal representing body of young professionals in Sault Ste. Marie. Through our membership and community involvement, we can work together to make an impact in our community and provide a voice for young professionals. These benefits will provide an incentive for young professionals stay and grow within the city of Sault Ste. Marie.

About Strive

Strive was developed in 2012 by the Sault Ste. Marie Chamber of Commerce to fill a representation gap for individuals between the age of 19 to 40. This subcommittee of the Sault’s Chamber of Commerce has an elected executive which is rotated annually based on its active membership’s votes. The elected executive of Strive works with other groups, individuals, and businesses inside of the community to provide networking events, learning development opportunities, and community involvement initiatives.

Strive YPG Terms of Reference

2017 Strive Executive

Ashlee Gerard - Head Start in Business
I currently work as the Program Coordinator for Head Start in Business - bringing entrepreneurship awareness and inspiration to students K - 12. I also volunteer as As the Chair of Strive for the remainder of 2017, I look forward to sharing in the enthusiasm of our executive team and working towards the creation of new opportunities for our members and community at large.
Vice Chair
Greg Lefave - Superior Auto Group
I am the President of the Superior Auto Group in Sault Ste Marie, representing Chrysler, Nissan and Thrifty Car Rental. As a new member of the Strive executive, I look forward to helping the team achieve their growth goals and add a fresh perspective to an already successful core.
Lacey Caputo - Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation
I count myself lucky to be able to combine my passion for marketing with my love for all things sports as I currently hold the position of Brand Manager for Sports Lottery with the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation. Always looking to further my experience and grow as a manager, I recently completed my MBA and have begun to take Executive Level courses from The Schulich School of Business to concentrate my skill set further. I am really excited to get involved with Strive and hope to help fellow young professionals realize that their passions can translate into careers they love.
Finance Officer
Eric Pino - KPMG LLP
I am a Chartered Professional Accountant working at KPMG LLP, a global professional services organization that offers audit, tax and advisory services to a wide range of clients in various industries. I coordinate and perform external audit engagements and assist clients with complex financial reporting and operational efficiency issues. In my capacity as Finance Officer, I hope to help Strive continue to build a strong business community of young professionals by providing members opportunities to connect and share ideas.
Events Officer
Hannah Rowswell - Northern Policy Institute
I'm currently the Communications Intern at Northern Policy Institute, as well as a BBA - Marketing Co-op student at Algoma University. I also volunteer as the Director of Events and Conferences on the Algoma University Business Society. I'm excited to get involved with Strive because as a student, I know how important networking is, and I look forward to planning events that will allow individuals to make some connections.
Marketing Officer
Dean Beilhartz - Sun Life Financial
As a financial advisor at Sun Life Financial, I’m also a small business owner. I work with individuals, families, and business owners of all ages, preparing for the future and protecting against the financial impact of unexpected health and life events. This is my second year on the Strive executive. Within our membership you’re sure to find other individuals just like you, to network and share ideas with. Meet new people, create partnerships, and help drive the Sault forward!
Communications Officer
Taylor Trecroce - SSMIC
I am the Youth Entrepreneurship Coordinator with YouLaunch of the Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre, where I support all of our youth clients by reviewing business plans, funding applications, assisting them in creating investor documents, and creating a personalized intake process. I have a strong pulse on what is happening in the community due to my involvement with the Soo Greyhounds, Strive, SSMIC, and with my position on the Sault Community Career Centre board. I graduated from Algoma University with a Bachelors of Business Administration (Honors) where I double majored in Marketing and Economics.
Recruitment Officer
Paul Caputo - PAC Construction Group LTD
My name is Paul Caputo. I am the President of PAC Construction Group LTD. I started my company at the age of 19 and continue to grow as I am entering my 10th year of business. My company provides commercial and industrial snow services and exterior landscape and construction. I have experience with funding agencies that can help you start your future as an entrepreneur. I understand all aspects of running a small business from being in the field or in the office. I am excited to help our strive members with any questions about starting your future or continuing as an entrepreneur.
Advocacy Officer
Erika Provenzano - Natural Resources Canada
I am a Librarian currently working for Natural Resources Canada Library Services as an Information Specialist. I work in a federal Forestry Print Repository/Specialized Library and am a part of a virtual team of information professionals. I am responsible for providing services to researchers and scientists locally and across Canada by assisting them with their information resource needs. I have an Honours Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Algoma University and a Masters of Library and Information Science from Western University. I currently serve on the Board of Directors of Program Read, which is a community-based adult literacy agency in Sault Ste. Marie. I have been a member of Strive since August 2015 and am anxious to provide research and community outreach expertise to the Executive team. I am passionate about connecting young professionals with necessary resources, information, and tools to build their networks and partnerships within Sault Ste. Marie and surrounding area.
Member At Large
Shawn Bibeau - KPMG LLP
I work for KPMG, as a manager in our tax practice, we provide a number of accounting and tax services to a wide variety of clients. To provide the best service to our clients, we often seek input from various areas of expertise within the community. I hope to bring this same approach to Strive. I think Sault Ste. Marie has a lot of untapped potential that this group can help highlight. We have a number of young, talented individuals that have built their own success either through building businesses or moving to other cities for work or school who have now returned. I think Strive can help those individuals work their way back into the community and help share those experiences with others. My vision for Strive is to build the platform that allows them to share those experiences. By connecting these individuals, with those starting and building their careers it will make it easy to engage and learn from each other professionally and personally. This will help members build strong networks, which I feel is a key part of being successful, for both businesses and individuals.

History of Strive Events

April 2017 – Strive @ 5 at The Canadian

March 2017 – Local Leader Series featuring Jasmyn Rowley, Brad Gregorini, & Greg Lefave @ Superior Nissan

March 2017 – Strive @ 5 at Arturo’s

February 2017 – Startup Sault & Strive @ Water Tower Pub

January 2017 – Strive Social @ Union Jack Brewing

November 2016 – Annual General Meeting at North 82

November 2016 – Bow Tie Bash Annual Strive Gala at The Tech

October 2016 – Local Leader Series with Dr. Kent Floreani at The Tech

September 2016 – Strive @ 5 at The Barrelhouse

August 2016 – Tee Off with Strive YPG at SSM Golf Club

June 2016 – Network @ Northern

May 2016 – Your Personal Brand workshop

April 2016 – Festival of Beer

April 2016 – Curling Funspiel

March 2016 – Local Leader Series with Tom Vair

January 2016 – Strive Social at Outspoken

December 2015 – Annual General Meeting

November 2015 – Financial Literacy & Dinner

October 2015 – Strive’s Fall Ball

July 2015 – Local Leaders Series featuring Mayor Christian Provenzano

May 2015 – Strive’s Downtown Business Hop

March 2015 – Local Leaders Series featuring Justus Weldman

January 2015 – Loplop’s Social

November 2014 – Annual General Meeting

November 2014 – Why oh Why am I a Gen Y

October 2014 – Meet the Candidates

September 2014 – Strive’s Gatsby Gala

May 2014 – Strive Crashes the Ontario Chamber of Commerce AGM

April 2014 – Festival of Beer

January 2014 – Dock’s Social

November 2013 – Annual General Meeting

November 2013 – Political Forum

June 2013 – Local Leaders Series featuring Dennis Turcotte

March 2013 – Local Leaders Series featuring Susan Hunter

February 2013 – Strive Thunderbirds Event

December 2012 – Strive Kickoff Event at Casey’s Pub

Aug 2012 – Strive YPG Group formed